Estate Planning For Women Is Different Than For Men

I always tell my married female clients that, unless they take an active part in the estate-planning process, they’re could find themselves in big trouble if they outlive their husbands.

We supposedly live in the age of gender equality. But some things still don’t add up equally. For example, women generally work fewer years outside the home. They earn only 74% of what men earn for similar jobs. And they generally live 5–7 years longer.

In most married couples, because the woman earns less, it’s she who often doesn’t contribute to pension plans, deferred savings plans, and retirement plans. And if she stops working to have a child or raise children, she has even less retirement savings – and less Social Security benefits.

Sadly, many women still rely on men to handle their estate planning. As a result, when a husband dies or there’s a divorce, the wife is usually in much worse shape than her husband would be in the same situation.

Women need to become more involved in planning for their futures! They need to discuss with their husbands how the death of either one would affect the other! They should understand their husbands’ retirement and financial plans. Are there life insurance policies? What about pensions? Does each one have long-term care insurance, to avoid depleting assets?

By preparing a will, health care proxy, and durable power of attorney, women have the power to make decisions for themselves…and to designate someone to make decisions if they no longer can. Otherwise, courts will decide how her assets are distributed upon her death, or who should handle her affairs if she can’t.

Sound complicated? We can walk you through it.

At The Law Offices of Alice Reiter Feld & Associates, we practice Elder Law. And, over the past 34 years, we’ve walked thousands of South Florida families through this process… with comprehensive estate planning, wills, trusts, powers of attorney, long-term care planning, asset-protection plans, and assistance with Medicaid or the VA.

We can help you secure your financial future. And we’re just a phone call away. 

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Posted in Alice Reiter Feld Florida Elder Law Monday Memos

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